Football, Game Article, Sport News | September 3, 2011

Stars are Born, Hawks win, 34-23 over La Vernia

One of four acrobatic catches from Receiver Quinn Pike

One of four acrobatic catches from Receiver Quinn Pike

The Canyon Lake Hawks are 2-0 for the first time in the history of the school and La Vernia did not have the Hawks as a homecoming game.

The stars were bright and gave the radiance for what could be a special year, in the 34-23 victory over the La Vernia Bears last Friday night at Bear stadium.

Two years ago, the Bears were doing what all opponents were doing and planning their homecoming dance at the expense of Canyon Lake. The problem? The Hawks were never invited to the party.

Going back three years ago, not only were the Hawks Homecoming fodder, but after each game they were seeing stars from the older more experienced teams.

“We brought it tonight,” Head Coach Matt Monzingo blurted out. “This is a great football program and the way we played…that was special. The chemistry showed tonight, this team has a purpose.”

This year the Hawks brought their party to La Vernia and now have the sweet taste of an early season road win. Canyon Lake had averaged one road win a year the past three years and this might be the year of more good times on other teams artificial turf.

They left the Bear’s stadium with the home team seeing stars after the dismantling at the hands of your Canyon Lake Hawks.

“This was a very successful game, we were good at everything,” Coach Monzingo said excitedly. “We are never satisfied and the team knows, we need to get better.”

The Hawks drove 80 yards on 13 plays for their first drive. The drive was after the defense bent but did not break and La Vernia had an anemic field goal attempt. The drive took eight minutes off the clock.

The game had a lot of the same characteristics of last week’s win over Blanco. The offense pretty much had their way against a tired Bear defense in the second half.

Last week the defense allowed the offense to kick into gear for the 14 points that were scored. This week the offense decided not to wait to get their game in gear and scored in every quarter.

The maturation of several players was evident to all that were in attendance. The stars were shining bright.

Branson Belcher reacted with 206 yards passing and Quinn Pike made Belcher look even better with passes that were caught over his head and every way possible.

“I’m real confident in our quarterback,” Split End Quinn Pike said. “We knew we had them.”

Oh yeah, we haven’t mentioned the star that was born. Zach Henshaw, had 190 yards rushing and once again he abused the opposition in the second half. In the last two games the Senior running back has had 109 yards in the first half and 280 yards in the second.

“We could tell they were tired…you could see them wearing downn,” the humble Zach Henshaw said. “The offensive line was amazing and they did a good job of blocking…I give all the glory to God.”

The Bible says that the Lord knows all the stars by name.

Henshaw garnered 253 total yards as he also chipped in with 63 receiving  yards. The first catch was a highlight reel with jumps and turns for a 44 catch and run.

“He (Henshaw) prides himself on people getting tired of tackling him, especially a safety,” Running Backs Coach Levi Montgomery admonished.  “Zach (Henshaw) works real hard.”

Zach Henshaw not only broke tackles, but he made hard getting a picture of him

Zach Henshaw not only broke tackles, but he made hard getting a picture of him

Henshaw knows that it is not all him, as the offensive line had their say on how the game was being played. But, Henshaw was not going to be denied on running plays or when he caught a pass either.

“We (offensive line) have it in us and we wanted to play ‘nasty’ and do our assignments,” Tackle Elijah Montgomery boasted. “We got them mad and angry and then we just pounded them…we brought the weight room with us.”

Joe D’Ottavio played exclusively on the defensive side of the ball even though the game plan is usually having him and Eduardo Covarrubias sharing carries in the linebacker role.

This night, D’Ottavio was having his way on the defensive side of the ball with two sacks on crucial drive stopping plays.

Linebacker Joe D'Ottavio recording one of his two sacks

Linebacker Joe D'Ottavio recording one of his two sacks

“(I) had to step up and fill in for some guys and wanted to be a leader of the team and have a positive mind set,” Linebacker D’Ottavio said.

Yes, the Bears scored 23 points, but the last drive was more of a ‘let them score and use up the clock type of defense’.

Long drives were the order of the day for the Hawks: 84, 80, 75, 60, and 54 yards on the drives will have the coaches feeling perky. Those numbers reek of a team playing in the middle of the season.

The Hawks scored 14 points in the fourth quarter while only registering a total of 29 points in 12 games last season. In fact, CL has 21 points in the two games in the fourth quarter already.

Conditioning…Conditioning…and Hard work has the players seeing dividends from those investments during the Summer months.

No mistakes on long drives or the ability to overcome the mistakes shows the chemistry and maturity of the offense.

“I feel more comfortable after the Blanco game…I got all the jitters out of the way,” Junior Quarterback Belcher surmised. “The line was doing well tonight.”

Daniel Camarillo makes the Bear receiver pay for his reception

Daniel Camarillo makes the Bear receiver pay for his reception

La Vernia is not a run of the mill football team and are regulars in the playoffs each year. This road victory gives the team confidence for the season. Of course anytime you are wanting to go big time you must win games on the road.

Hence the, not letting the teams schedule the homecoming game in your honor.

The team and fans did not have a problem getting home…there were so many stars on the bus the lights were bright enough to see in the dark.

Next week the Hawks will be at home against Sealy Tigers…come out and see if the school has to turn the lights on.

             1   2   3   4   Final
 CL Hawks    7   7   7  13   34
 LV Bears    0   7   8   8   23
 Scoring Summary:
 Hawks-Branson Belcher 1 yard run (Jake Robinson kick), 2:09, 1st
 Bears-Grubb 35 yard pass from Sahagun (Dews kick), 11:41, 2nd
 Hawks-Branson Belcher 1 yard run (Jake Robinson kick), 4:31, 2nd
 Hawks-Zach Henshaw 44 yard pass from Branson Belcher (Jake Robinson kick), 9:36, 3rd
 Bears-Gill 12 yard run (Wiatrek run), 6:04, 3rd
 Hawks-Zach Henshaw 40 yard run (pass failed), 11:26, 4th
 Hawks-Zach Henshaw 5 yard run (Jake Robinson kick), 3:07, 4th
 Bears-Andrews 8 yard pass from Sahagun (Grubb run), 0:46, 4th
 Team Stats      Hawks   Bears
 Total Yards     441     316
 First Downs     19      18
 Rushes/Yards    38/235  34/139
 Comp/Att/Int    10/14/0 15/23/0
 Passing Yards   206     177
 Punts/Ave       1/36.0  1/31.0
 Fumbles/Lost    0/0     2/0
 Penalties-Yds   6-45    4-20

 Passing         Comp    Att    Pct   TD   Int
 Branson Belcher 10      15    .667   1    0

 Rushing             Att  Yds   Ave   Lg   TD
 Zach Henshaw        29   190   6.6   40   2
 Eduardo Covarrubias  5    39   7.8   22   0
 Branson Belcher      4     6   1.5   11   2

 Receiving           No   Yds   Ave   Lg   TD
 Quinn Pike           4    96  24.0   34   0
 Zach Henshaw         2    63  31.5   44   1
 Jeremy Fulton        2    19   9.5   11   0
 Matt Magness         1    19  19.0   19   0
 Eduardo Covarrubias  1     9   9.0    9   0